4. They Backed Themselves Into This Corner
The Reebok deal, fighter pay disparity, and a myriad of other issues have caused quite the rift between fighters and UFC brass.
In fact, the general atmosphere amongst fighters appears to be an “us vs. them” type situation, with talks of a fighters union gaining traction but never seeming to quite materialize. We’ll have to wait and see what transpires for that.
But frankly, in terms of promotion, the UFC isn’t helping the situation by paying a select few (mainly McGregor) a massive amount of money while the other 99 percent wallow in relative poverty and obscurity.
Most fighters not named Conor McGregor have to fight three to four times a year just to make ends meet, and even then it may not work out.
That kind of disparity has only further distanced McGregor from his peers, and it’s obvious that the rest of the UFC roster is keenly aware of this. It’s also put the UFC, and therefore WME-IMG, in a spot where they have no choice but to pay McGregor his asking price or risk not being able to pay back the monstrous loans outstanding on the record-setting $4.2 billion purchase.